In response to French successes in Normandy, in the winter of 1449 Sir Thomas Kyriell and his small army sailed to Cherbourg with the aim of reinforcing Caen. Supported by troops led by Sir Matthew Gough, the English army captured Valoges and was marching towards Bayeux when Comte de Clermont’s French army intercepted them near the village of Formigny. The French opening strikes easily overcame Kyriell’s lines, before attacking the English archers with two culverins (cannons). The English retaliated and seized the cannons but, just as the French showed signs of breaking, reinforcements arrived from the south led by Arthur de Richemont. The English met the attack but failed to keep their line; as they fled the field the French rode down many of the retreating soldiers. Defeat at Formigny led to the fall of Caen a few months later and, soon after, the English loss of Normandy.
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